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Duck Confit with Blueberry Sauce

I finally thawed that duck we bought circa Christmas last year.  We have plenty of duck fat so a confit was a no-brainer:The 6 inch deep hotel pan was just about perfect for this…This is after 3 or 4 hours at 250.  I grabbed a bone with tongs and it slipped right out.  Had to have been a thigh bone because the two leg bones were still there.I had the notion that I could crisp the skin under the broiler of my toaster oven but I think a pre-heated 500 degree oven would have been the better call.  The skin wanted to brown under the broiler but I could see that it was going to burn the high spots.  I pulled the skillet because the veggies were done and needed to be served.We went with Brussels sprouts and teeny potatoes with prosciutto, sauteed in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.The blueberry sauce was a reduction of red wine, balsamic vinegar, and the last of our blueberry syrup, with a dash of allspice and cinnamon.The rice is my favorite box mix, Zatarain’s Long Grain and Wild Rice.

 

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Chicken Marsala

20150615_165337 (1600x1060)Mmm… this is so easy to make!  The link is to Emeril’s recipe but there isn’t much variation in the recipes that I’ve found on line.  The easy to yummy ratio is right up there with peanut butter jelly sammiches.  The green beans were steamed and then sauteed in garlic butter and a splash of balsamic vinegar and were very good that way.  I’m no cooking purist, the Zatarain box mix rice was on point for this.20150615_165351 (1600x1060)

Chocolate Icing

DSC_7757 (1600x1060)Mrs J made a pan of brownies last night from a box mix.  The photo on the box showed a piece with a shiny chocolate icing and I was disappointed that there was nothing like that included in the box.  I had a vague memory of someone making icing using unsweetened cocoa powder so I looked online and found several recipes.  I really like the Allrecipes.com how-to videos on their recipe pages so we went with theirs.  We used Splenda in our version, mostly.  Three cups of it and a half cup or so of confectioner’s sugar gave us the look we wanted.  More sugar or less milk/butter would firm the icing for spreading – we spooned ours on.

Box mix etouffee

It doesn’t get much easier than this.  I used a box mix for both the rice and the etouffee, adding some thawed shrimp I had on hand.  It isn’t as good as from scratch, but it isn’t bad!

Sticky Chicken

I was all set to make lemon chicken with the couscous but I got a bit sidetracked when I ran across this recipe.  It looked pretty good so I gave it a shot.

Played around with the recipe some, added mushrooms and didn’t follow the directions in the recipe to the letter.  That’s what makes cooking fun for me.  The pictures will tell the tale.  You are supposed to cook the chicken in the sauce until the sauce is “sticky”-hence the name of the dish.  I chose to go with merely “thick”.

Protip:  Do not add a little water to the dirty pan and turn the gas on high to soften the mess as an aid to the cleanup and then walk away and start a blog post, forgetting about the pan.  Just sayin.  Good thing it isn’t cold outside because all the windows are open.

Enjoy!

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